Is Surgery Always Needed?
Surgery might not be needed as often as we think. In fact, several studies show that Physical Therapy is just as good if not better than surgery. Here at Orthocare Physical Therapy Center, our Physical Therapists take an individualized approach to your concerns to help you decrease chances of undergoing unnecessary surgery. In most cases, you are not even required to have a prescription to consult with us first!
In a recent review, the researchers estimated that 10% to 20% of surgeries might be unnecessary. The reasons for so many unneeded surgeries being performed vary, but the most common are that more conservative options are not tried first, or a lack of knowledge on the part of the surgeon about the current evidence about the efficacy of some surgeries. If a surgeon hasn’t continued to learn after residency, they won’t know that these surgeries often don’t offer any more benefit than a non-surgical treatment and will continue to perform them.
Surgery isn’t a cure-all, and is sometimes just a very expensive and risky placebo.
In fact, recent evidence suggests that that certain common surgeries aren’t any better than a placebo. One example is Partial Meniscectomy – a procedure used to treat tears of the meniscus in the knee.
Every surgery, even “minor” ones carry risks. These include complications from anesthesia, blood clots after surgery, delayed healing of the incision, infection, and unintended damage to nerves or other organs near the surgical site and sometimes even more serious outcomes.
The current evidence suggests that for some patients and conditions, surgery is a great treatment option, but if surgery can be avoided, it should be avoided.
How Physical Therapy Helps!
For musculoskeletal problems like Back and Joint Pain, Ligament Sprains, Muscle Strains, Rotator Cuff Tears, Meniscal Tears, Spinal Stenosis, Low Back Pain, and Osteoarthritis seeing your Physical Therapist before a surgeon may help keep you out of the operating room and get you back to life without surgery. Starting with Physical Therapy is the right first choice, and for many patients is the only treatment necessary.
Clearly, Physical Therapy can’t fix every problem, and for some patients surgery IS the best choice. Still, Physical Therapy is just as good if not better than surgery for several conditions and carries less risk.
Here at Orthocare Physical Therapy Center, we focus on providing 1-on-1 care to give you the best chances in preventing unnecessary surgery.
So, what are you waiting for?